|Scooped by Quintin Anderson|
Jane Goodall Abstract
Jane Goodall is a British primatologist, ethologist, anthropologist, and UN Messenger of Peace. She is considered to be the world’s foremost expert on chimpanzees, and has spent forty five years studying social and family interactions of wild chimpanzees in Tanzania. She is also the founder of the Jane Goodall Institute, which works extensively to empower people to make a difference for all living things.
Jane Goodall was born in 1934 to Mortimer Herbert Morris-Goodall, a businessman, and Margaret Myfanwe Joseph, a novelist. She was born in London, England, and grew fond of chimpanzees and animals in general, despite living in a metropolitan area. This was mostly due to a lifelike chimpanzee toy that was given to her by her father. To this day, that chimpanzee toy still sits on her dresser in London. She spent her childhood in London, but once she entered her young adulthood she decided to move to Africa.
in 1957, she moved to a friend’s farm in the Kenya highlands. Once there, she made a phone call to a man named Louis Leakey, who was an archaeologist and paleontologist who believed that studying great apes could help indicate the behavior of early hominids, and he was looking for a chimpanzee researcher. However, Goodall was unaware of this and was simply interested in discussing animals over tea. After the meeting, Leakey proposed that Goodall work as a secretary for him, which she agreed to. They left for Olduvai Gorge in Tanzania to lay out their plans.
In 1958, Leakey sent Goodall back to London to study primate behavior and anatomy, being that she had no college studies or primate studies previously in her life. Then, in 1960, she went to Gombe Stream National Park, where Goodall would spend nearly forty five years of her life. In 1962, Goodall took a break from Tanzania, when Leakey sent Goodall to Cambridge University where she obtained a Ph.D degree in theology, becoming the eighth person to be allowed to study for a Ph.D without first receiving a BA or B.Sc. Once she obtained her Ph.D in 1965, Goodall once again returned to the Gombe Sream National Park, where she continued her work studying the Kasakela chimpanzee community. Without having collegiate training, she was able to observe things that many scientific doctrines overlooked. She gave all the chimpanzees names rather than numbers, and recognized their specific personality traits. She observed human interactions like hugs, kisses, and tickling. Her findings suggested that humans and chimpanzees have similarities in more than just genes, but in the fact that they too have emotion, intelligence, and relationships with their surrounding family and friends. Her studies were great for the scientific community, but they are best known for challenging the long-standing belief that only humans were able to construct and use tools. After staying with the apes long enough, she was able to witness them constructing different uses for things like branches and even grass. Humans had long distinguished itself from the Animal Kingdom as “Man the Toolmaker” so, as Louis Leakey wrote, “[Man] must now redefine man, redefine tool, or accept chimpanzees as human!”
Jane Goodall has had a very active personal life as well. She has been married twice, first to a wildlife photographer named Baron van Lawick in 1964, with whom she had a son, Hugo Eric Louis. However, the couple divorced in 1974, and the next year she married a member of Tanzania’s parliament Derek Bryceson. Unfortunately, he died of cancer in 1980. Goodall created the Jane Goodall Institute, which works to make a difference in the lives of all living things, and to help people have the knowledge and power to make a difference in their own communities. She has earned many awards, including the Graham J. Norton Award, Disney’s Animal Kingdom Eco Hero Award, and the Benjamin Franklin Medal in Life Science.